Will Atom-powered smartphones offer a multi-boot option?

Posted by Aharon Etengoff

Imagine if you could boot multiple operating systems on an Atom-powered smartphone without spending hours hacking, modding or rooting.

Or how about using an emulator such as VMware to switch back and forth between your favorite operating systems, say from Android to MeeGo to Windows Phone 7?

Will Atom-powered smartphones offer a multi-boot option?Obviously, multi-boot or full-on emulator support would be easiest for OEMs to implement on a tablet device with ample RAM and storage space.

But could Intel's next-gen Atom chips enable a viable multi-OS option for smartphones?

Well, an Intel spokesperson told TG Daily that the company's x86 architecture and Atom chips were fully "capable of supporting" multiple operating systems in various configurations.

"Intel [is] always looking at new ways to [accelerate] innovation and choice. For example, you are already starting to see some of this [multi-boot] in the netbook space.

"[Clearly, we] want to offer the most choice of software and ensure it runs best on Intel's chips. That's been our strategy for ~25 years. Enabling more choice in this area will benefit the industry and help to speed innovation.

"[So] yes, Intel architecture and Atom [processors] are capable of supporting this type of [multi-boot] scenario [for smartphones]. [However], we are not making any new announcements at this time."

Still, we’re keeping our fingers crossed and hope to hear more about multi-boot smartphones at Intel’s Developer Forum in September.

Of course, 

TG Daily will be there, so stay tuned!